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Featured Reviews

Mission 2017 ‘VS’ Chardonnay and Syrah, and 2016 ‘Reserve’ Cabernet Sauvignon

23 November,2018

Mission Estate in Hawke’s Bay is very successful with its ‘Estate’ wines which are representative of variety and region, while offering accessibility in terms of style, as well as price. One need only go up one tier to the ‘Vineyard Selection’ wines to have bottlings which capture the essence of a vineyard. The next level up is the ‘Reserve’ range, which is the premium tier for Mission Estate. These are serious wines which have complexities and the ability to develop positively with time in bottle. The ‘Reserve’ wines are second only to the limited release ‘Jewelstone’ wines, which are Mission’s flagships. Here, I review the 2017 ‘Vineyard Selection’ Hawke’s Bay Chardonnay and Syrah, along with the 2016 ‘Reserve’ Cabernet Sauvignon.


Mission ‘Vineyard Selection’ Hawke’s Bay Chardonnay 2017

Chardonnay from New Zealand – Hawke’s Bay


Brilliant light golden-yellow colour with some depth, a little lighter on the rim. The nose has a rounded but well-packed core of white and yellow stonefruits harmoniously entwined with a layer of lifted and sweet nutty oak, and suggestions of creamy barrel-ferment. Subtle flint elements add interest. The aromatics are fresh and bright. Medium-full bodied, the palate has aromatic and lifted flavours of bright citrus fruit with white stonefruits and lifted florals, along with sweet, nutty oak and subtle creamy barrel-ferment elements. The palate has a fine, tight, light-textured core and line with refreshing, bright acidity to balance the fruit sweetness, and the wine carries to a fragrant, lingering finish. This is a fragrant and aromatic citrus-fruited Chardonnay with bright fruit and acidity and a fine heart with creamy hints. Match with creamy seafood and poultry dishes over the next 3+ years. Clone 15 fruit from a single site in Te Awanga, fully barrel-fermented to 14.0% alc., the wine aged 9 months in 45% 1 y.o. barriques, the remainder in 2 and 3 y.o. barrels, undergoing batonnage, with no MLF. 18.0/20 Nov 2018 RRP $19.99

Mission ‘Vineyard Selection’ Hawke’s Bay Syrah 2017

Syrah from New Zealand – Hawke’s Bay


Dark, deep, ruby-red colour with slight purple hues, a little lighter on the rim, youthful in appearance. The nose is elegantly proportioned with good depth and intensity of aromatic dark raspberry fruit with hints of blackberries, along with white pepper, violet florals and a little liquorice, unfolding fresh and dark herb notes. Light-medium bodied, the palate is elegant and somewhat restrained, a little slender in proportion, with light raspberry fruit melded with fresh and dark herbs, white pepper, and hints of dark-red and violet florals. The light fruitiness is underlined by modest, but supple tannin extraction lending palate dryness. The acidity is soft and integrated, and the wine carries to a light, gentle finish. This is a light, slender, fresh raspberry and peppery Syrah with herb and floral notes on a light-structured palate. Serve with antipasto, tapas and Mediterranean fare over the next 2-3 years. Fruit from vines grown in gravel soils, 47% from the company’s ‘Gimblett Road’ vineyard, fermented to 12.6% alc., the ‘Gimblett Road’ portion aged 13 months in French oak barriques. 16.5+/20 Nov 2018 RRP $19.99

Mission ‘Reserve’ Hawke’s Bay Cabernet Sauvignon 2016

Cabernet Sauvignon from New Zealand – Hawke’s Bay


Full, even, dark, deep, near impenetrable black-hued purple-ruby colour, a little lighter edged, youthful in appearance. The nose is soft in presentation but unveils a deeply packed and concentrated, rounded heart of ripe blackcurrant fruit along with soft notes of black plums, revealing cassis and dark herb elements in the glass. The aromatics have an underlying freshness. Medium-full bodied, the palate is rounded with a well-concentrated and packed core of ripe blackcurrant fruit harmoniously melded with black plums, cassis and dark herbs, and some irin-earth complexities. The fruit is underlined by fine, grainy tannin structure lending mouthfeel, grip and presence, with soft background acidity giving accessibility. The wine carries smoothly to an elegant, lingering finish, This is a well-concentrated Cabernet Sauvignon-base wine with a rounded heart showing blackcurrant, plum, herb and cassis flavours on a balanced and fine-structured palate. Serve with roasted red meats over the next 6-7 years. A blend of 85.1% Cabernet Sauvignon from the Gimblett Gravels and 14.9% Merlot from the company’s ‘Mere Road’ vineyard, fermented to 13.5% alc., the wine spending 30 days on skins post ferment, and aged 12 months in 25% new French oak. 18.0/20 Nov 2018 RRP $29.00

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